17th July 2020
“Let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
So wrote the author of Hebrews to his Christian readers. It seems some had given up meeting together, probably under pressure to return to the Jewish faith. There are Christian believers today who go to extraordinary lengths just to meet, risking arrest, imprisonment and even death. Surely, then, we should be able to meet together!
That’s been a challenge during lockdown. I thank God that we’ve been able to have services online and to meet by Zoom. It’s not ideal, but it’s a lot better than nothing, and I hope you’ll persevere with it. At the same time, I’d like to think we can do better.
Why not invite someone to join you for the online service, or for Fellowship Group, or the Prayer Gathering? Two households can now meet together. Or why not join others for a walk or something else outside? Up to six people can do that. And we’re working as a staff team to see how we can meet together at church as soon as possible.
But why do Christians meet together? It’s to “encourage one another”, “to spur one another on towards love and good deeds” – which requires some thought: we’re to “consider how we may” do it. It will, of course, involve reading the Bible together, so that we know what love looks like and what good deeds are. It will involve praying together, asking God for the help we need to love and do good deeds.
It’s a corporate responsibility. Yes, the leaders should be thinking through how to do it, but it’s something for “us” to consider and do. Is there someone you could be ringing up, or calling round to see, or meeting with, in order to encourage them?
And why do we need to encourage one another? Because “the Day [is] approaching”, the day when Christ returns. We want there to be as many Christians as possible on that day, and we want them to be as Christ-like as possible.
What encouragement do you most need from these verses? Is it to meet with other believers? Is it to seek to encourage them? Is it to remember the Day is approaching?
Lord, we thank you that our Saviour is coming. Make us ready for that day, and help us to encourage one another to be ready. Amen.